Michigan Club Tennis
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5 Reasons Why Michigan Club Tennis Is Better Than High School Tennis

Goodbye sore losers, hello national championships.

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5 Reasons Why Michigan Club Tennis Is Better Than High School Tennis
Kaitlyn Fox

At the conclusion of my final high school tennis season, I thought I had had enough of tennis. Over the course of four years, I had my fair share of tiring practices, defeating loses, and dishonest opponents. I was excited to leave behind the people who put all their eggs into the basket of tennis and all the drama they imposed on my life on and off the court. Upon arriving at the University of Michigan, however, that all changed. After hearing about club tennis from older friends, I decided to give it a try in the hopes of at least making a few friends who share the same interest as me.

After a week of tryouts against tough competition, I found out I made the team, and I've had the time of my life ever since. Being on the club team has completely changed the way I view tennis and the culture around it, and I believe that is largely because it's a heck of a lot better than the tennis I experienced in high school. Here are five reasons why I believe club tennis at U of M is a better experience than high school tennis:

Everyone is there just to have fun

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There were countless times during my high school tennis career when I would question why I was even playing tennis as I had to deal with screaming girls, balls hit at my head on service exchanges, and opponents who would question every line call I made. Many of my opponents in high school were striving for recognition from colleges or simply had an ego that was way too big for their game, so they often let their competitiveness get the best of them. As I joined the club team, I was fearful of encountering another dose of this toxic competition but wound up meeting people with the same mind-set as me.

Members of the club team are there to take a break from the demanding academics of a Michigan education and don't let their competitive impulses get in the way of having a good time. Being on a team that's driven by fun instead of pride is so refreshing and certainly more fulfilling than anything I've experienced in high school sports.

...but it's still very competitive

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Although club tennis is laid back and fun, everyone has lots of talent and many have a background of state titles and other impressive achievements on the court. Whenever I attend practice, I know I'm going to play against really good players, and this high level of competition not only keeps practices interesting but also improves my game.

We're representing one of the greatest schools in the country

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There's no better feeling than yelling "Go Blue!" at a teammate after they win a point (especially when it's against Ohio State). Although my high school had a few notable achievements, it doesn't even come close to the feeling of walking onto the court sporting blue and maize and knowing that I'm representing an outstanding university. I feel so honored that I get to play on a team of incredible athletes and students and make a contribution to the greatness that is the University of Michigan every time I step on the court.

Everyone is super cool and makes me feel at home

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My first time ever meeting the team in its entirety was filled with hugs, smiles and so much joy. The petty teenage girls of high school tennis made the sport unenjoyable, so finding a group of people who are super down-to-earth is a blessing and makes me excited about playing the sport I love. Sometimes joining a new club can be a little awkward at first, but from the first day of practice I felt like I found a new tennis family that I can count on and go to for support.

We win...a lot. 

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Coming from a high school team that barely won any tournaments at all, it's nice to finally be part of a team that is considered "really good" (and arguably the best). To say I'm on a team that has national championships under its belt is an amazing feeling, and I know there are more great things ahead of us in the future. In high school I felt as though I worked really hard to pull off tough wins and some of my teammates didn't have that same drive, causing them to ultimately lag behind. The club team has a fierce passion for beating even the toughest rivals, so I know that when I'm giving 100%, my teammates are right there with me.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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